Friday, February 24, 2012

Lundi Gras - "Here Comes the Big Parade!"

I know that many of my friends from the North will not understand the idea of Mardi Gras in New Orleans. I understand what my northern friends hesitations are as I had them myself.  Mardi Gras is not about the drinking and Bourbon street.  I didn't get that for ever and I could never understand why my good Catholic friends were always so excited about their memories of Mardi Gras.  Then I had the chance to go and I learned about this crazy unique sub culture of history and charity that exists within the Krewes of the Carnival Parades.  It is still newer to me so I can't explain it but I can say that I am intrigued and really enjoy our involvement.

The food is one of the best parts of any New Orleans visit. 
YUMMY - the food almost makes the traffic worth it.

J had four riders this year.  He has been on the Orpheus Krewe since that first year.  I have never riden and don't really want to.
I prefer to spend the day resting and then dressing up for the ball. 

J describes the experience like that of feeling like a rock star.  He claims that there is an incredible rush having hundreds of people calling out to you even if you are wearing a mask and throwing beads to the crowd.

J is proud to be a part of the big parade and I enjoy watching him share that with his guests.
The Orpheus Krewe was started by Harry Connick Jr.  He is very much considered the famous son of the city.  He uses his celebrity to bring others to his parade and then the ball.  Everyone has a great time and money is raised for his music charity.
This year Brett Michael was one performer.
Cyndi Lauper was another. 

This is a picture of the street lights that were used years ago to light the way for the parade.  They look so dangerous.  I don't really understand their history but the locals do.
This is the way I always get into the ball.
J rides in on the float.

This year I was not able to get on the correct side to see him at the ball and get his attention but it is still thrilling to watch them come in.
Lisa and Bill enjoyed themselves.  Bill and J were very sore the next morning but then so was I.  These twins are kicking my butt, I don't know why I ever thought I could handle all that walking.
I was glad to have Lisa's company to chat with, shop with and arrive at the ball together looking great in spite of our little time in the rain and our long walk over.

Elizabeth and Tony enjoyed themselves.  It took awhile for them to perk up after the ride.  I guess throwing beads for several hours can really wear a person out.
I have always been a huge Harry fan.  This is only the second year I have seen him and this is the first time he performed.  He joined Brett Michael for two songs. 

Great performances all around.  The crowd loves Harry so much.  Having him on stage electrifies the crowd.
His daughter joined him on the piano.
Harry is calling up his Law and Order: Special Victims Unit's co-star.

Mariska Hargitay joined them on stage. 

Brett Michael surprised us as how great his performance was.  He really is an all star entertainer.  It is his Poison time is what I remember most about his music.  I loved hearing "Unskinny Bop" as it took me back to the year that J and I dated.

Cyndi Lauper was not my favorite entertainer, but we stayed and "We Pop"ped a little because "Girls Just want to have fun."
We headed back to the hotel so very late.  That felt like the walk of death.  Lisa and I both had blisters.  Bill and Jason were both sore.  Elizabeth and Tony stayed later.  It was a very hard long walk.  The hardest part was getting up the next morning and getting out of town before the Mardi Gras Day parades began.  We were still sore and tired.  Driving out of town we saw several floats full of people hauling it down the highway.  Only in New Orleans where Mardi Gras is taken so seriously can a float full of people be found going down the interstate at highway speeds.  It is part of this sub culture that J and I have fallen in love with.  I hope that each of you had a very Happy Mardi Gras (and Lundi Gras) knowing that you will have a prayerful Lent.


  1. What a great post! I'm sure it took a lot of time to put together b/c it was so informative, but I'm glad you did it. Mardi Gras in New Orleans is on my bucket list. I've been to the STL event a couple of times, but don't really get it. Still, I think it would be fun to get to experience the "real" thing! Glad you were able to get away and have such a good time. I'm thinking your traveling days are probably numbered! :)

    P.S. Are you finding out gender...and if so are you sharing with us publicly? I have a little sewing project up my sleeve and just need a bit of "guidance" ;) fabric-wise!!! If you're not sharing before delivery, no big deal. There are so many modern/contemporary fabrics these days I'm sure I can figure out something gender neutral!

  2. We will find out next Tuesday for sure about the sexes and then we will share. So far our pattern is girl-girl-boy-girl-girl-boy-girl-girl-boy; I would suspect we are looking at two girls. I will let you know.

  3. Hi Neen!
    Sorry I never got to the blogger award stuff. Quite the busy week, and now I am leaving to go out of town, I will be minus some kids when I leave and be sitting in a hotel room for a good portion of the time, so maybe I can do it on my laptop :) You look great in that 20 week photo!! My guess is that you are having girls too and wow! that would fit your pattern perfectly.

  4. Wow...I never realized...looking at all your kiddos photos...that that is the baby gender pattern you have! That is AMAZING!!! While your youngest munchkin might appreciate a set of brothers...I know he will love on sisters just as much. I do have to say, with there being almost 4 years between Ben and Luke, I still love how close the 2 boys have become. I think it might be different if Luke was a girl. I know Ben would love on her, but Luke is definitely his buddy!


I love hearing your thoughts. Thank you for stopping by.